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Old 03-16-2018, 02:43 PM   #1
catbook
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Onyx Boox Max2, is it worth it?

Hi there,
I'm a student, in Italy, so relatively without money.
And I study Law. In this last months I started to use, due to investigation activities, many electronic document for studying. A lot of PDFs, a lot of them with a fixed formatting or scanned images, EPUBs.
I've always printed them. €0,02/A4, it doesn't cost a lot.
But It's a waste of time go every time to print them, and a waste of paper, too. And, many times, I prefer not to print and save money, but not to read.
I can't use the pc to read, too many problems with my eyes.
So I've start to study the sector of >10 ereaders, I have some questions:
1) It's possible to study with an ereader? Underlining, etc?
2) 10 inches is enough? Or for a4 I need a >13'' reader?
3) I focused on Onyx Max Carta and Onyx Max2. The difference in price is big, I found the first at €420 (used), €550 new, the second €799 new.
But I'm not convinced by the first for the lack of real touch screen, the lack of sensitive stylus pressure, an old android version, the lack of HDMI in-port.
But, is it worth it?
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Old 03-17-2018, 08:52 AM   #2
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@catbook

1. It is possible to study with an e-reader. You also can underline and make notes. Also using the device really protects your eyes.
2. 10 inch is not enough when reading PDFs, because you have to painstakingly crop the page in every new document. Besides, often the writing in the original document is small and you have not enough screen space to increase it. So for A4 you definitely need a 13.3 inch e-reader. It makes your life so much better. I did have the 9.7 inch e-readers, now own MAX2 and consequently know what I'm talking about.
3. I also had Max Carta. Max Carta is a good device, but it is annoyingly slow, while it uses another stylus technology, which is not so precise. For example on the superior and inferior quarters of the screen, the line you draw appears above, respectively under the tip of the pen. I couldn't live with these shortcomings, so I changed to the next generation. Max2 is very expensive, it's true, but it brings many advantages as well: better, very precise stylus technology, improved reaction times, touchscreen (though after you get used to stylus, don't really need this feature), the possibility to use many more third party apps (Carta has Android 4.0, Max 2 has Android 6.x) , including for reading for example from Kobo and Amazon, and the monitor function (HDMI). While writing or making other types of annotations, you really don't need pressure sensitivity.

Max2 has a problem however. The touch screen layer is sensitive. Therefore Onyx applied a protective screen over the first two of them. That third layer however is sensitive to scratches whenever you're writing or erasing with the stylus. These scratches do not impair or damage the functionality of the e-reader, nor are they visible under normal light conditions, but they are not aesthetic and in a year or so, they could become more visible. The solution is to buy screen protector(s) and apply it on the screen.

Be aware though, that they're very sensitive to any dust traces in the air, and it is almost sure you will be unsuccessful from the first try. Thus buy 4 or five of them from the beginning and start practicing. I was successfully at the fifth try! The size of the screen compounds the difficult process. Don't laugh now. To reduce the dust in the air, go to your bathroom and after you take a bath, take the device inside and do the thing. The steam seems to bind the finest dust particles down. Max Carta has no such problems with scratches because it does not have that problematic touch screen.


I hope that helps.

Last edited by Drew22; 03-17-2018 at 08:59 AM. Reason: correcting text
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Old 03-17-2018, 03:56 PM   #3
catbook
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Drew22 View Post
@catbook

1. It is possible to study with an e-reader. You also can underline and make notes. Also using the device really protects your eyes.
2. 10 inch is not enough when reading PDFs, because you have to painstakingly crop the page in every new document. Besides, often the writing in the original document is small and you have not enough screen space to increase it. So for A4 you definitely need a 13.3 inch e-reader. It makes your life so much better. I did have the 9.7 inch e-readers, now own MAX2 and consequently know what I'm talking about.
3. I also had Max Carta. Max Carta is a good device, but it is annoyingly slow, while it uses another stylus technology, which is not so precise. For example on the superior and inferior quarters of the screen, the line you draw appears above, respectively under the tip of the pen. I couldn't live with these shortcomings, so I changed to the next generation. Max2 is very expensive, it's true, but it brings many advantages as well: better, very precise stylus technology, improved reaction times, touchscreen (though after you get used to stylus, don't really need this feature), the possibility to use many more third party apps (Carta has Android 4.0, Max 2 has Android 6.x) , including for reading for example from Kobo and Amazon, and the monitor function (HDMI). While writing or making other types of annotations, you really don't need pressure sensitivity.

Max2 has a problem however. The touch screen layer is sensitive. Therefore Onyx applied a protective screen over the first two of them. That third layer however is sensitive to scratches whenever you're writing or erasing with the stylus. These scratches do not impair or damage the functionality of the e-reader, nor are they visible under normal light conditions, but they are not aesthetic and in a year or so, they could become more visible. The solution is to buy screen protector(s) and apply it on the screen.

Be aware though, that they're very sensitive to any dust traces in the air, and it is almost sure you will be unsuccessful from the first try. Thus buy 4 or five of them from the beginning and start practicing. I was successfully at the fifth try! The size of the screen compounds the difficult process. Don't laugh now. To reduce the dust in the air, go to your bathroom and after you take a bath, take the device inside and do the thing. The steam seems to bind the finest dust particles down. Max Carta has no such problems with scratches because it does not have that problematic touch screen.


I hope that helps.
Thank you very much. I'll try to collect money... or just wait some months.
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Old 03-17-2018, 05:28 PM   #4
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In my case both 10 inch e-ink readers and lcd tablets are good enough for A4 PDFs, as there is a landscape mode, and there is no need for pdf cropping beforehand, but of course, it takes at least two screens per pdf page or scrolling, in the case of a one-column A4 pdf, or at least a four screens per page for two-column A4 pdf, regardless in portraite or landscape mode, so, 13" screen is definitely more comfortable solution for many students who don't mind e-ink reader without the frontlight.

As already stated, many students find e-ink readers too slow at annotating, even at page flipping, so, you should really try it yourself.

It could benefit your eyes if you read on e-ink screen and simultaneously use lcd tablet for annotations, color, dictionaries, quicker zooming etc.

Last edited by Marinolino; 03-17-2018 at 06:39 PM.
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Old 03-18-2018, 07:17 AM   #5
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Given that the newest Max has Android 6, annotation and highlighting capabilities just might be enough if you can find the right apps (the onboard apps might even be adequate). However, to preserve the screen, I would prefer doing all that primarily via a BT keyboard+touchpad instead of the stylus.

And perhaps I would focus on using it as a monitor more often than as an ereader. On a computer you can easily open any sort of file, multiple apps side by side, e.g. pdf viewer and a text editor, arrange them in any way on the monitor, fullscreen them alternately in quick succession, and work as fast as you are able to type. These advantages will likely never be achieved with eink touchscreens.
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